Background and procedural information
House Joint Resolution 1 seeks to amend the Ohio Constitution to create a seven person redistricting commission. The bill is currently in committee.

Under the proposed legislation, are single-member districts a requirement or otherwise implied?

Yes. The bill specifically requires all Congressional and legislative districts to be single-member.

Does the proposed legislation provide for Voting Rights Act compliance (e.g. can the commission use voter history information)?

Yes. The bill requires that the redistricting commission comply with all federal laws, including but not limited to laws protecting minority voting rights.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?

The commission is comprised of seven members. The Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, the President of the Senate, and the Minority Leader of the Senate each appoint one member. Those four members convene and must unanimously appoint the remaining three members. If the four members cannot unanimously agree on one or more of the appointed seats, each member must submit the name of a proposed appointee to the Governor, who must randomly choose a name. The Governor must repeat this process for each seat to be filled.

Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?
Yes. The bill favors competitive districts to the extent that they do not impede other redistricting standards laid forth.

Under the proposed legislation, can members of the public submit plans?
No. There is no mechanism created by which the public may submit plans, however, the bill does require all commission meetings to be open to the public.

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?

No. Redistricting is only to be done in years ending in “one,” unless a court finds a plan to be illegal.
May 14th 2008
Is the House of Representatives Too Small?

The U.S. House of Representatives has been at 435 members since 1911, when the country was a third of its current population. Research suggests that districts may now be getting too big for adequate representation.

November 15th 2006
Redistricting Reconsidered
Washington Post

Citing FairVote's Dubious Democracy 2006, an editorial notes that non-competition in U.S. House races has causes more fundamental than gerrymandering.

November 1st 2006
Lines of demarcation
Dallas-Fort Worth Star-Telegram

FairVote research cited in this commentary on lopsided redistricting, uncompetitive districts and the party primary battles they inspire.

October 30th 2006
Electile Dysfunction?
News Release Wire

Former FairVote President Matthew Cossolotto calls for a range of reforms, highlighting two problems of American democracy: "counting the votes" and "making votes count."

August 19th 2006
Eliminate districts
Contra Costa Times

CA resident calls for proportional voting in one statewide district as a congressional redistricting reform.

[ Next ]